Monday, December 30, 2013

Trailer Trad Attire: Fall Finds 2013

Has the corduroy craze come and gone? Has it come? Has it gone? Didn't notice. I don't really like corduroy, especially jackets. However, this vintage one had the little extras that I couldn't pass up. First, even though I'd guess that it is forty years old, the corduroy fabric is that ultra soft, thick kind that you can't find anymore. The lining is also very soft, made of satin or silk and the pockets have piping trim that is a nice little touch. It also fits me very well. -Nice with my old beat-up jeans.

A couple of new wardrobe workhorses, these H&K (that's Hilditch & Key of Jermin Street, London ) shirts fit great and have been in heavy rotation lately.
I never pass up old, vintage khakis in good shape with no stains and these are pretty good. This Korean War button-fly veteran fits well in the waist but are a little too short. Maybe let them down?
A really nice militaria dealer sold them (gave them away really when I bought this super WWII pennant with quite a history. It came off of the Iowa class battleship the USS Wisconsin. Because it came from this guy, I believe the story. It's hanging in the 'doghouse' (my living room) looking great in a place of honor.
These sky blue training shirts are all cotton and made in France. And they're cheap as sh*t. I love' em to run in or for off-season tennis practice. They're kind of unusual in that they have actual buttons on the sleeves so that they can be rolled up like a dress shirt!

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

A Holiday Wish from Trailer Trad

Here's hoping that your holiday expectations weren't over-inflated this year!

Monday, December 23, 2013

All I Want for Christmas...

Merry Christmas from Trailer Trad!

Monday, December 16, 2013

Trailer Trad Is... Wagoneer or Land Cruiser?

Recently, I've come across a few vehicles that struck my fancy. This mint Wagoneer sat on the same carport with not one but two beautiful mahogany Chris-Crafts run-abouts. Lucky dude, whoever the owner was.  
I came across this very nice little Land Cruiser recently after breakfast at a favorite greasy spoon. The restaurant specializes in bbq and is located next to/in an old trailer park. It is also next to a tiny used-car lot and that's where I spotted this collectible small Land Cruiser. Nice. This little beauty will set you back 10 grand but supposedly it has been extensively restored. -Tempting but these can be a little rustic for a middle-aged guy like myself.
So, which is the winner?
Editor's note: For round two, I plan on a contest between an IH Travel-All or Scout versus an older Land Rover. We don't want to bother with Broncos or Jeep Cherokees, do we?

Monday, December 9, 2013

Trailer Trad Attire: Flannel Shirts

Flannel shirts can be grunge. Flannel shirts can be preppy. The way that they can be simultaneously both makes them trailer trad. Of course, there are flannel shirts and then there are flannel shirts.
Filson made the finest flannel shirt that you could buy ("Might as well have the best" is the company slogan). -Do they still or have they sold out and gone to sh*t? Great American brands get taken over and trashed so quickly now-a-days that I can't keep up.
The good news is there is a vintage brand that is pretty unknown I believe so you should be able to pick them up at vintage stores or ebay cheaply. The brand is Frost Proof. Made in the US (of course), these were made during the middle of the last century and were often available at farm supply stores and the like where they were sold to guys who needed a tough, warm shirt.

Like Brooks Brothers buttondowns and old Levi's, the quality of the fabric is the main reason why I consider Frost Proof flannel shirts classics. These are almost blanket thickness but yet remain ultra comfortable. The last time I was home, I absconded an old one my dad used to carry in firewood thirty years ago. -Still right as rain.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Under the Din of a Dying (Reborn) Marquee

My hometown now boasts two beautiful downtown theaters. One is a tastefully designed  modern multiplex that blends nicely with its Main Street surroundings. The other is the newly restored State Theater. The theater sat neglected for twenty years and I assumed that it's best days were behind it.
Turns out the beautiful marquee (1950s enameled steel with neon lighting and many, many little light bulbs) was kept safely in storage for many years. Recently, it was shipped out west where it was professionally restored. Supposedly the refurbishing was really, really expensive. It looks fantastic. Unfortunately, I haven't seen it at night but I'll bet that it is stunning.

Editor's note: I tried to find a playable version of City Breathing's "Under the Din of a Dying Marquee" but couldn't find one. Check it out on Spotify.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Steeple Chase Weekend: Breakfast at The Old Man's

I was pleased to spend time with an old college friend and Dog Island camping veteran 'The Old Man' at the Montpelier Races. He and his date invited a few of us over for breakfast the following morning and we gratefully accepted.  
Not too far from Orange and the Races, T.O.M.'s place is obscured from the road by massive Boxwoods that nearly made a tunnel over the entrance. This is the view as you drive through the old iron gate onto the farm.

"This is LOONIE TUNES!" I laughed as I entered the house through the old servant's level that has been converted to the main entertaining level. Now it boasts a world-class kitchen. Joining the original 19th century floors and weathered brick are hand-made custom walnut cabinets and huge island topped with beautiful soapstone from Walton's Mountain (really). He has worked on his home for nearly twenty years and it's turned out fairly well, wouldn't you say?


Monday, November 18, 2013

Steeple Chase Weekend: "Where DID You Get Those Country Ham Biscuits?"

While the country ham came from a very fine source Calhoun's (although everybody calls Calhoun's Tom's Meat Market), the ONLY place to get bisuits on which to place succulent, salty country ham is from the time-honored establishment below. I entered through the alley entrance and took a tour. Care to join me?
The huge, beautiful porcelain gas oven is from the 1930s and was surely an old-timer back in the 1950s when families formed long lines here for Easter hot-cross buns, Sunday picnic biscuits and wedding cakes. There are only three of these in existence.
 'Steam-punk' baking!
This might look a little messy but, trust me, the very best bakers and chefs would love to have a kitchen with such a palpable air of history.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Steeple Chase Weekend: Montpelier Races 2013

I had a terrific time on the first Saturday in November at the Montpelier Races. It was held at the historic home of James and Dolly Madison in Orange County as it has been since the 1930s at least. The weather was glorious, the Virginia hardwoods were on fire with color and it was great to see family and friends for a time honored annual ritual. I actually, through some miracle, won a wager placed on one of the races (I picked the horse with the word 'awesome' in the name). I think its safe to say that everyone was a winner that afternoon.  
Blue Boy strikes again! I pulled an old favorite tie out of the closet to hit just the right note. People looked at the big bluish blobs on my club tie and asked "What ARE those?" expecting some equestrian motif appropriate for the Races. "It's Rembrandt's Blue Boy, of course." -A little confusion never hurt anyone.